Biggest Black Hole’s Mass = 18 Billion Suns

Posted on January 10, 2008  Comments (3)

Biggest black hole in the cosmos discovered

The most massive known black hole in the universe has been discovered, weighing in with the mass of 18 billion Suns. Observing the orbit of a smaller black hole around this monster has allowed astronomers to test Einstein’s theory of general relativity with stronger gravitational fields than ever before.

The black hole is about six times as massive as the previous record holder and in fact weighs as much as a small galaxy. It lurks 3.5 billion light years away, and forms the heart of a quasar called OJ287.

The smaller black hole, which weighs about 100 million Suns, orbits the larger one on an oval-shaped path every 12 years. It comes close enough to punch through the disc of matter surrounding the larger black hole twice each orbit, causing a pair of outbursts that make OJ287 suddenly brighten.

3 Responses to “Biggest Black Hole’s Mass = 18 Billion Suns”

  1. no name provided
    January 11th, 2008 @ 2:20 pm

    That is so cool! It’s hard to imagine ANYTHING that big, much less a black hole. Very cool. The mass of a small galaxy? Wow!!

  2. no name provided
    January 11th, 2008 @ 4:09 pm

    That is fascinating! It is also hard for me to get my mind around it!

    The hardest thing to understand is that a black hole has ‘weight’.

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. KesheR
    January 13th, 2008 @ 6:38 am

    Amazing… There is no god.

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